BANGKOK – Christmas in Bangkok this year will be tinted with yellow in memory of Thai king Bhumibol Adulyadej.
Yellow has been chosen as the main color for Christmas decorations this year to pay homage to Bhumibol, the ninth monarch of the Chakri dynasty, who died earlier this year at the age of 88 after reigning under the name Rama IX, according to media reports.
In Thailand, colors are associated with different days of the week and each member of the royal family is associated with a color depending on the day they were born.
This custom, originating from Hindu mythology, established yellow for Monday, the day Bhumibol Adulyadej, one of the most popular kings in the history of Thailand, was born.
The color has been associated with him since 1946, the year he ascended the throne.
Real estate company CPN, developer of the Central World mall in Bangkok (popular for its Christmas decorations), said on its website that the Christmas campaign this year focuses on bringing in cheer for 2017.
Chaweewan, a 70-year-old woman said this year smaller Christmas trees have been placed in the mall as a sign of mourning, but it does not mean there cannot be a moment of happiness amid the prevailing atmosphere of sadness in the country.
Although 94 percent of the Thai population practices Buddhism, Christmas celebrations have become increasingly popular among consumers and businessmen, who take advantage of the festive season to conduct brisk business.
While Bangkok is getting ready for the occasion like every other year, certain activities such as firework spectacles will not be allowed this year owing to the official one year mourning period, said the Royal Thai Police chief Chakthip Chaijinda in a press conference.
Bhumibol’s death ended a historic chapter and has given way to a period of transformation in Thailand.
His only male child Vajiralongkom was proclaimed the new king on Dec. 1 and will reign under the name Rama X after his coronation, which will take place after the mourning period.